Congregation Beth Israel’s Youth Engagement Program provides a welcoming, comprehensive Jewish education for students in Pre-K through high school.

YEP is a nurturing and creative environment inspired by the ritual, spiritual life, and Jewish values of Reform Judaism.

Every family receives a spiritually rich, relevant, and engaging experience, fostering positive Jewish identity formation. We incorporate both traditional and non-traditional learning and teaching styles to best meet the needs of our individual students and families on their Jewish journeys.

Our mission is to serve the lifelong spiritual and educational needs of our congregants within a welcoming and caring contemporary Reform Jewish community. YEP builds strong Jewish community, families, and individual identities through engagement with Torah, God, and Israel.

Implement curricula that support our vision.

 

1. Create an awareness of Jewish history, holidays, festivals, and lifecycle events.

2. Create familiarity with Torah and Mishkan T’Filah (the Reform Judaism prayer book), Hebrew, and Jewish music in order to provide students with familiarity and comfort in any Reform synagogue.

3. Encourage thoughtful spiritual awareness in an open and safe environment.

4. Create understanding of the concepts of Covenant, mitzvot, tzedakah, and tikkun olam in our community.

5. Develop a spirit of K'lal Yisrael (Peoplehood) and strengthen the connection to Israel, its history and its people.

6. Provide necessary tools for Jewish living to complement in-home Jewish learning.

7. Maintain our commitment to the professional development of our staff to be current with educational teaching techniques, tools and technologies.

Sessions are held on Sundays from 9:00 to 11:30 AM for grades Pre-K through 7. In addition, students in grades 3 through 7 learn Hebrew and prayer individually with a private tutor for 20 minutes per week. Lessons are scheduled at the mutual convenience of student and teacher and take place remotely on Zoom. On the first Wednesday of each month, from 5:00 to 6:30 PM, students are invited to join us for "First Wednesday", a program of special activities, socializing and dinner.

Click here for the 2021-2022 YEP Calendar.

Click here for the YEP Handbook.

Click here for our Privacy Policy.

Aleinu

Al Shlosha D'varim

Torah Blessing (Before Reading)

Torah Blessing (After Reading)

Sh'ma and V'ahavta

Mi Chamochah

K'dusha (Saturday Morning)

Havdalah

HaTikvah

Haftarah Blessing (Before Reading)

Avot V'imahot

G'vurot

Chatzi Kaddish

Chanukah Blessings

Birkat Hamazon

To request more information about YEP, please contact our Director of Lifelong Learning, Rabbi Howard Rosenbaum, at 860-233-8215 x2330 or hrosenbaum@cbict.org.

YEP COVID Guidelines
As we come back to school in person once again, just a reminder that our YEP program follows the COVID guidelines as set forth by the West Hartford Public Schools as they apply to us. The full text of the guidelines can be accessed HERE.

Guidelines for contact tracing and quarantining are, as follows, in brief:

  • Students who are even mildly symptomatic with any of the symptoms associated with COVID-19 should immediately isolate at home, test for the virus with a PCR, antigen, or home self-test, and remain away from activities outside of the home until they are fever-free for at least 24 hours and other symptoms are significantly improved.
  • Students who test positive for COVID-19 should isolate at home for at least 5 days, or longer if symptoms develop and persist. A mask should continue to be worn for an additional 5 days at all times when around others.
  • Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated students who are notified that they have had a close contact with an individual who has confirmed or suspected COVID-19 should immediately quarantine at home and test for the virus 5 days after their last exposure to the COVID-19 case. This is especially important in situations where extended high-intensity exposure may have occurred, such as with household contacts, in unmasked social settings (e.g., sleepovers, parties), and/or during athletic activities.

Fully vaccinated students and staff no longer need to quarantine if they remain asymptomatic.

Students within a classroom setting (not on buses or in other non-classroom settings) are not considered close contacts if they are not within 3 feet of a known COVID-19 case for 15 minutes or more over a 24- hour period, provided:

  • contact between students happened exclusively inside a PreK-12 school classroom
  • both parties were wearing a well-fitting mask consistently and correctly during the entire duration of their contact
  • the student who is considered to be a close contact remains asymptomatic

Program Highlights

Starting at ages 3-4, we begin to plant the seeds of a joyful Jewish life. Students learn about Jewish holidays through songs, games, and crafts. We teach through stories, art projects, music, dance, and fun, building a community of young children and families.

Students study the Hebrew alphabet, quickly learning to decode basic Hebrew vocabulary. As they progress, they practice fluency in reading, translating basic prayer vocabulary, and using Modern Hebrew vocabulary. Each level reinforces our students’ prayer literacy, building comfort at Shabbat and holiday services.

Our experiential Judaic studies courses include themes such as Jewish values, Israel, Jewish history, Torah, and Jewish arts and music. These classes engage students in Jewish life.

Our 10th grade program gives students an opportunity to engage with our clergy relevant Jewish issues and questions. A highlight of Confirmation is participation in the L’Taken Seminar at the Religious Action Center, the legislative advocacy arm of the Union for Reform Judaism in Washington, DC. Students learn about Jewish perspectives on contemporary U.S. policy issues and meet with Connecticut congressional representatives to advocate a position. At the end of the year, the Confirmation class leads a service including individual speeches about their personal connections to Judaism.

Beginning in the 2018-2019, we are partnering with JTConnect, Greater Hartford's premier Jewish teen education organization to offer programming for 8th-12th grades on Sunday mornings. Teens explore Jewish topics of interest to them and take part in social justice learning projects.

Register here for JTConnect at CBI.

Download (PDF, 347KB)

Regular Family Education programs provide a venue for children and parents to learn together with our clergy. These programs may incorporate music, art, drama, and text.